mh                                              Mike (centre) pictured with Andrew Prescott and Stuart Lewis at the launch of the Welsh Repository Network.




Early in 1995 the University of Wales Aberystwyth decided to adopt a new approach to the management and delivery of information services and to bring the Computer Unit, the University Library and the Audio-Visual Services Unit together to deliver a new integrated service. A new post of Director of Information Services was created, tasked with developing this service. Dr. Mike Hopkins, previously Deputy Librarian at Loughborough University of Technology, was appointed as Director in May 1995 and took up his post in October 1995. Now, more than 13 years later, having achieved the University’s objective of producing a well integrated, harmonious and unified department, Mike has decided to retire and will be leaving on 31st March 2009. He plans to spend more time attempting to perfect his golf swing and to keeping his very large garden under control. He will be greatly missed by members of Information Services whether from a Library, Media or IT background and we all wish him well for a long and successful retirement.

He will be succeeded by Rebecca Davies, currently the Head of the Welsh Assembly Government Library and Public Enquiry Service, who will be taking up her post on 18th May 2009.

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image-119531-webThe redesigned Trevithick Library at Cardiff University has been declared officially open by Honorary Fellow Carol Vorderman.

At a special launch event held in the Library on 25 March 2009, speakers included Professor Malcolm Jones, Pro Vice-Chancellor, Estates, and Janet Peters, University Librarian.  Janet is pictured with Carol Vorderman.

Speaking at the event, Carol said: “It is fantastic to see investment in modern facilities which not only look stylish but are also practical and really cater for the needs of students and inspire research and learning.”

As part of Information Services’ Library Review, the Trevithick Library has been completely redesigned to enhance the student experience. It now offers a range of modern environments which meet changing technological and curriculum needs.

Key elements of the new design include a research lounge, open study spaces, group study rooms, wireless networks and a modern ‘computer bar’. To allow students total flexibility, self-service book issue and return units and an external 24 hour book return chute have also been installed.

More information in press release

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UC&R Wales Event — Creating New Learning Spaces — Cardiff University Trevithick Library  29th April 2009

Ruth Thornton (the Trevithick Librarian) and Amanda Heal (Design Research Unit Wales, Cardiff School of Architecture) will be presenting the Trevithick Library – from Vision to Reality. The planning and implementation of the new learning space which is the Trevithick Library. The session will include a tour of the Library.

In the afternoon Professor Philippa Levy (Academic Director, CILASS – Centre for Inquiry-based Learning in the Arts and Social Sciences, University of Sheffield Information Commons) will be talking about The Development of new learning spaces at Sheffield University.

Ian Pearshouse (the Learning Research Systems Manager of The Learning Sciences Research Institute (LSRI) at The University of Nottingham) will be presenting The findings from the JISC funded study  “Effective Evaluation Models and Practices for Technology Supported Physical Learning Spaces” and taking a look at where we go from here…

Cost £30.00 per delegate including buffet lunch and refreshments

For more information or to reserve a place, contact Steve Lee at

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Find out more about the papers being delivered in Cardiff next week:

Choose Pre-Conference workshops and Parallel Sessions to see summaries of the papers and further links. Look out for the presentations after the conference.

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Congratulations to Cathie Jackson, Senior Consultant – Information Literacy in Information Services at Cardiff University, who has been awarded a  prize for Excellence in Teaching by the HEA Subject Centre for Information and Computer Science. This is Cathie’s second award – last summer she was presented with the Wallace Breem Memorial Award for an outstanding contribution to law librarianship.

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Date: Friday 3 Apr 2009, 9.30am -3.30pm
Venue: Mercure Holland House Hotel and Spa Cardiff
FREE event

RSC Wales is pleased to announce that bookings are now open for a JISC project dissemination conference, focussing on the growing use of learner technologies and open educational resources in educational delivery.

Three different JISC funded projects, carried out collaboratively by HE and FE institutions in Wales, have been exploring the use of mobile technologies, social networking software, open educational resources and the use of customised search engines to facilitate learner-centric discovery learning. This conference presents the outcomes of these projects and invites delegates to debate the implications of their findings for the future of education, the changing roles of learners and teachers, and the emerging mixed economy of educational resourcing. The conference is being jointly hosted by the University of Glamorgan and Swansea Metropolitan University and organised in association with JISC RSC Wales. 

For more details and to book a place, go to  by Friday 20 March.

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Scotland’s university researchers are to benefit from an online shared initiative that makes key journals more widely available, thanks to an agreement negotiated by JISC Collections and led by the Scottish Confederation of University and Research Libraries (SCURL).

The Scottish Higher Education Digital Library (SHEDL) has been backed by all of Scotland’s HEIs, who say that easier access to more journals will stimulate better research and support learning and teaching. It is the first scheme of its kind in the United Kingdom. Three leading academic publishers – Cambridge University Press, the American Chemical Society and Springer – have signed up for the pilot scheme.

Sheila Cannell, the chair of SCURL, who is Director of Library Services at the University of Edinburgh, said: “Differential access to journals has been a problem for some researchers but with the advent of SHEDL we are now providing them with a level playing field. It not only provides universities with a greater range of materials, but will also encourage collaboration between institutions as it gives researchers access to journals on the fringes of their chosen disciplines.”

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CoFHE Wales is organising a one day conference on the 24th April at
Coleg Glan Hafren Cardiff.

Topics include the FE Toolkit for Wales, Devolved LRCs and Library 2.0 in academic libraries.

For more information contact Ellen Harris at:

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David Learmont joined Bangor University in January this year as the
Director of Library and Information Services. His background is in IT
and he has most recently been involved in an organisational change
programme at University of the Arts London, consolidating the delivery
of IT Services there. He is looking forward to the challenges life in
Bangor will throw at him, and in particular working within a library
context. As well as overseeing the library and IT function, David will
be involved with the University’s plans for a new Arts and Innovation
Centre at Bangor as well as the development of a digital strategy.

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With the advent of the Welsh Repository Network, Wales becomes the first country in the UK where all higher education institutions have established online repositories. The formal launch took place at the National Library of Wales on 19 February as part of an interesting and informative day.

Developed under the auspices of WHELF, the Welsh Repository Network is made up of 12 individual university research repositories. Dr Michael Hopkins, Director of Information Services at Aberystwyth University, said: “The repositories allow universities to archive and protect the intellectual output of their institutions, but also make available cutting-edge research to the world.”

It was reported in the Western Mail on 26 February.


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